Create localized, current content that you update often.
How Often Should you Blog: You should look at it as something that becomes a habit, three times a week or more is ideal for maintaining interest throughout the web. A great blog post can simply be answering a question that a customer asked you that day, it can be a reference to a great article that you read. It doesn't need to be a book-length article, just do it often!
Attract Trackbacks: Blogs tend to attract links back. It is a common trend for other blogs to reference your blog posts, and link back to them, which is very helpful for your search engine ranking.
Social Media Accounts: Creating several social media accounts for Twitter, Facebok, MySpace, etc can produce some very valuable links back to your website.
Social Media is real estate that you can control. You get to say good things about your company, and have reach a lot of users.
Sales Message versus Informational: Over time, if you produce good quality content that is inciteful and entertainment, you build up a trust account with your readers that allows you to put out occassional sales messages. Once you establish trust with your readers, by giving them information without bomboarding them with sales messages, you will have a good long term relationship with your customers.
Blog Software: Wordpress.org - a free, open source blogging software that is good to use. Open source is a great thing, as it means a whole community designs themes and plugins that you can utilize for your blog.
RSS Feeds - Make it very easy for people to subscribe to your blog. An RSS feed allows people to "subscribe" to your content. You can also use RSS feeds to republish your content on other blogs. Take the RSS feed - you can run your feed into your Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter accounts.
Best Practices: You should read blogs, follow blogs, find out what's going on in the industry. Start making comments on other blog posts, referencing back to a post on your blog if appropriate.
Customer Searches: Ask your customers - what do they search for to find your company, start writing down the keywords they are using.
Spiders - Writing 3-5 times a week makes search engine spiders pay more attention than writing once a month.
Promote your Blogging: In addition to writing in your blog, make sure to spend time promoting your blog.
• Weekly digest email - send out emails to entice users to read your latest post.
• Email subscribe to blog
• Social Media Profiles - link to your blog in your profiles
• Strategic network - send our emails to your customer base to ask for stories. Utilize your customers to help create a strategic network, ask your customers who they use for services and products, and build your own strategic network.
• Guest post
• Surveys for content - Vertical Response has a great tool for sending out surveys. A great way to get content ideas to write about.
• Publish to Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook (can use RSS feeder like Feedlips)
Ask for comments - encourage people what they think of your topic.
Comment on comments - post comments on other blogs.
Create Categories - Create multiple categories for your blog with different topics that allow people to subscribe to specific information.
Be Human - write personalized, informational content in your comments - don't just advertise your services or products.
Great Tools for Wordpress Blogs:
Askismet - anti spam
Relatd Entries - shows more posts
All in one SEO - extra SEO juice, gives Wordpress an extra set of SEO tools
Twittertools - posts to Twitter
DISQUS comments - system
Add to Any - subscribe tool
Good Blog Examples:
Source: This information is taken from my notes taken during a VerticalResponse Webinar, featuring speaker John Jantsch of www.ducttapemarketing.com
Social Networking has overtaken porn as the #1 activity on the Internet - Huffington Post
ComScore Media Metrix’s year-end report found that women’s community was the most visited and fastest growing Internet category, tied with politics. The number of unique visits to women’s community sites jumped 35% to almost 70 million from 52 million. This is quite an achievement considering the US Presidential race.
In September 2008, InsideFacebook published a new survey that shows that women outnumber men on Facebook in every age group.
Among all the women who use social media, about 66.4% say they use Facebook, followed by MySpace at 16.3%, Twitter at 3.1%, and LinkedIn at 1.4%.
Ashton Kutcher and Ellen Degeneres have more followers on Twitter than Ireland, Norway, and Panama have people living within their borders - Twitter & World Population Data
In mid-July 2009, Anderson Analytics published the results of an interesting survey of 5000 users in the United States, finding that MySpace had the youngest average user age (29 yrs old), while LinkedIn’s audience is the oldest (36 yrs old). Facebook users have on average 34 years old while the average age on Twitter is 33.
Facebook currently has a population that would make it the 4th largest country in the world - Facebook statistics
Guitar Hero took 40% of their budget that was used for TV and it moved to the Internet.
"A year ago, the largest component of Face book was actually people who are below 24-years-old. Now the largest component is 35 to 49,” - Magid Abraham of comScore
"There are 300 million Facebook users today, 2.7 million articles in Wikipedia, 130 million blogs out there and 3 million tweets are sent per day." - Fred Briggs, Verizon Business